Saturday, August 25, 2012
They could match your Microsoft Product Code to the applications you install, creating a dossier. Or they could build a database of “typical” or “trending” applications. Or they could ignore all that useful information and just help you avoid malware.
Microsoft denies Windows 8 app spying via SmartScreen
August 24, 2012 by Dissent
Iain Thomson reports:
Microsoft has moved to quell fears that Windows 8 is building up a detailed record of all applications stored on client machines via its SmartScreen application.
An analysis by security researcher Nadim Kobeissi noticed a potential privacy violation in Windows 8′s SmartScreen system, which checks applications that the user wants to install against a database of known dodgy code and warns the user if Redmond’s records suggest there may be a problem.
Read more about the researcher’s claims and Microsoft’s response on The Register.
In other Microsoft news, David Burt writes that he has uploaded a two-page Issue Backgrounder on Microsoft’s revised privacy statements. You can download that here.
Why would this surprise anyone? And it is probably “secret” only in the sense that they have not held a press conference explaining it in detail. You could as my Data Mining students why any candidate should be doing this – I'm trying to train them to answer such questions without sounding too condescending.
AP uncovers secret data-mining by Romney campaign
August 24, 2012 by Dissent
Jack Gillum reports:
Building upon its fundraising prowess, Mitt Romney’s campaign began a secretive data-mining project this summer to trove through Americans’ personal information — including their purchasing history and church attendance — to identify new and likely wealthy donors, The Associated Press has learned…. For Romney’s data-mining project, which began as early as June, the Republican candidate quietly turned to a little-known but successful analytics firm that previously performed marketing work for a colleague tied to Bain & Co., the management-consulting firm that Romney once led.
Read the AP report on AP.
You may think that sending an IM or an e-mail is private or secure, but at the end of the day, these can be forwarded, archived, copied and pasted, or viewed in history. DueIM is a simple website that negates all this by letting you send password-protected messages that are instantly deleted after they are read.
Fortunately, I have some lawyer friends (shocking, I know.) who can explain these verdicts to me.
What the Apple v. Samsung Verdict Means for the Rest of Us
The jury in the landmark intellectual property case Apple v. Samsung ruled overwhelmingly in favor of Apple on Friday, awarding the iPhone maker approximately $1.05 billion in damages. Although that figure is impressive on its own, the jury’s Apple-friendly design and utility patent rulings could have an even larger effect on the mobile industry and the world’s consumers. That means you.
Samsung was quick to issue a comment to that effect. “Today’s verdict should not be viewed as a win for Apple, but as a loss for the American consumer,” Samsung said in an official statement. “It will lead to fewer choices, less innovation, and potentially higher prices.”
South Korean Court Rules Apple and Samsung Both Owe One Another Damages
Apple and Samsung’s international courtroom tribulations took a slight turn for the worse for all parties involved Friday. A South Korean court ruled that both companies infringed on one another’s intellectual property and owe each other damages.
The Seoul Central District Court ruled that Samsung violated one of Apple’s utility patents, over the so-called the “bounce-back” effect and slide-to-unlock features in iOS, and that Apple was in violation of two of Samsung’s wireless patents. Apple’s claims that Samsung copied the designs of the iPhone and iPad were denied.
For my Business Continuation students. Apparently, the city owns the power buses...
"On Aug. 23, Mayor Mike McGinn of Seattle informed residents that the city would partially shut down its municipal data center for five days including the Labor Day weekend. As a result, city residents will be unable to pay bills, apply for business licenses, or take advantage of other online services. In a Webcast press conference, McGinn isolated the issue as a failure in one of the electrical 'buses' that supplies power to the data center. Because that piece of equipment began overheating, the city had to begin taking servers and applications offline to prevent overloading the system. The maintenance will cost the city $2.1 million of its maintenance budget. A second power bus will remain operational, supplying enough electricity to power redundant systems for critical life and fire safety systems, including 911 services and fire dispatch. The city's Web sites should also be up and running in some capacity."
This is good enough for the President of the United States. I think with a little effort, we could make it work to poll students?
'We the People' goes open-source
The Obama administration's "We the People" online petitions platform has been open-sourced, allowing other individuals or groups to tailor the system for their own use.
The "We thePeople" code was released under the GNU General Public License yesterday, and is now available on GitHub.
Online video, the new Homework!
If you are a fan of TED Talks or Khan Academy, you may know that there are other websites which offers engaging talks, lectures, and presentations. Keen Talks is another one that curates the knowledge of the web, touching on a broad range of topics categorized by subject area and speaker.
… What’s most interesting about Keen Talks is that its collection covers from various sources, compared to TED Talks where you are only limited with TED’s material. It also goes beyond the lecture and speech format, as you can also watch the best conferences, debates, and interviews.
My students keep asking if I have Skype installed. Perhaps they have moved beyond the phone and email? Why would I need to see them (or them, me) to answer questions?
In the age of Yahoo IM!, Skype, Google Chats, instant messaging and video chat are hardly a big deal for most computer and Internet savvy users. But the cross platform application, QuicklyChat aims to make video connections more instant but with a feature for warding off interruptions when users are busy.
QuicklyChat works almost like a walkie-talky, but with video, in that users can keep it open while at their computers, and when a co-worker wants to talk it’s a simple matter of inviting a user for a chat, rather than say walking to his or her office down the hall.
QuicklyChat works on Mac and PC, and requires a quick registration.
… QuicklyChat was released this August and will be available for free in beta for a couple of months or more.
Teachifying stuff I find interesting...
Hack Education Weekly News: California State University System Outsources Online Education to Pearson
...The California State University system – the largest public university system in the U.S. – is outsourcing its online education offerings to Pearson.
...Jon Becker and I have rolled out the first draft – hey, let’s call it a launch! – of our collection Hack(ing) School(ing).
...SkilledUp officially opened its doors this week. The startup offers a directory of more than 40,000 online courses from over 200 providers, organized in such a way to make it easier to find what you’re looking for: price, course direction, instructor, and so on.
...It’s 2012 and college students still don’t like digital textbooks. More details from The Chronicle of Higher Education.
...The Beloit Mindset List – what the Class of 2016 has “always known.” [Humor? Bob]
Dilbert explains why I have cut the price of this blog by 50%